Lieutenant Joe Capece graduated from the University of Central Florida with a Bachelors of Arts degree in Criminal Justice. He joined the Orlando Police Department in 2001.  As an Officer in 2008, Lieutenant Capece joined the Crisis Negotiation Team and currently serves as the Deputy Team Commander.  Lieutenant Capece is currently assigned to the Orlando International Airport.  Lieutenant Capece was a first responder to the scene during the Pulse Night Club Terror Attack and transitioned to a CNT Team Leader role as the incident progressed.  Lieutenant Capece assisted in the post incident investigation as he was a supervisor in the Criminal Investigations Division at the time of the Pulse Terror Attack.  

Pulse Night Club Terror Attack - On June 12, 2016, an active shooter entered a small night club on the outskirts of downtown Orlando.  As police intervened and the shooter barricaded himself with hostages, the Crisis Negotiation Team and OPD SWAT responded.  When the suspect called 9-1-1, negotiators were confronted with the fact that it was more than an active shooter--it was a terror attack.  This case study explores the involvement of first responders, negotiators and SWAT operators who responded to the Pulse Night Club attack, offers a timeline of events, provides insight into the thoughts of those on the scene, inside the club, command and negotiators.  

Dr. Heather McElroy is a Board Certified Police and Public Safety Psychologist with over 15 years of experience working exclusively with public safety agencies conducting psychological pre-employment screening, fitness for duty evaluations, critical incident debriefing, hostage negotiation, and wellness training.  She has been POST certified as a Peace Officer since 2011, and she served as chair of the International Association of Chiefs Of Police Psychological Services Section.  She was also the Education Chair of the Police and Public Safety Section of the Public Service Division of the American Psychological Association and currently serves on the Ethics Committee of the IACP.  Dr. McElroy is dedicated to increasing diversity in the field of police and public safety psychology and is a mentor in the early career minority police psychology mentorship group to encourage minority development into leadership positions within the field of police psychology.  Her course instruction experience includes training for the National Internal Affairs Investigator’s Association, Georgia Internal Affairs Investigator’s Association, the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Colorado Association of Chiefs of Police, and the FBI National Academy Associates South Carolina, Georgia, and Mississippi Chapters.  She has also published articles in Police Chief magazine related to psychological fitness for duty and co-authored a book chapter titled, Social Climate Change and the Modern Police Department:  Millennials, Marijuana, and Mass Media.

Darron T. Esan is a 26-year police officer, currently assigned to the rank of Lieutenant with the Orlando Police Department. Lt. Esan graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice from Florida State University in 1996. After graduation, he began his law enforcement career with the Tallahassee Police Department where he served for three years. Lt. Esan left TPD after being hired by the Orlando Police Department in May of 1999.

Since coming to the Orlando Police Department, Lt. Esan served as a Field Training Officer and a Criminal Investigator before being promoted to Sergeant in 2006. As a Sergeant, Lt. Esan was assigned to and supervised units within Patrol, Community Involvement (Downtown Bikes Unit), Neighborhood Patrol Unit, Uniform Drug Unit, CID – Robbery, and CID – Homicide. Lt. Esan was able to create and supervise the first multi-jurisdictional task force related to the investigation of Homicide, the Joint Homicide Investigation Team (JHIT), falling under the 9th Judicial Circuit State Attorney’s Office.

Lt. Esan was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in 2014 and has commanded sections within Uniform Patrol, the Drug Enforcement Division, Criminal Investigations Division – Property Section, Criminal Investigations Division – Violent Crimes Section, and is currently a Watch Commander at the Orlando International Airport. Previously, Lt. Esan served as a Hostage Negotiator (2003-2013) and is currently the Team Commander of the Emergency Services Unit.

Lt. Esan went back to school and graduated with a Master of Science Degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Wisconsin – Platteville in 2017. Since achieving this degree, Lt. Esan has taken on secondary employment as an Adjunct Professor with Valencia College (Orlando, Florida) as well as with Southwestern College (Wichita, Kansas). Lt. Esan has a passion for teaching and enjoys developing curricula which pertains to the law enforcement profession, specifically addressing areas such as Leadership and Communication.

Lt. Esan is married to his best friend, Annemarie whom he met while beginning his career with the Orlando Police Department. They have been married for 16 years and they have a 27-year-old daughter who lives and works in Portland, Oregon. When not working, Lt. Esan enjoys playing golf, traveling, and working with Major League Soccer as a Soccer Security Agent. Type your paragraph here.

LaSalle Smith, Sr. began his law enforcement career with the Federal Bureau of Investigations in Washington, D.C.  He was assigned to the Identification Division, and later transferred to the Security Division.  When his father became gravely ill back in Lithonia, Georgia, Mr. Smith resigned from the F.B.I. and relocated back to the Atlanta Metropolitan area to support his mother. He later joined the Atlanta Police Department. After serving only three years in the Field Operations Division, he was promoted to the rank of Detective and assigned to the Auto Theft Division. He later transferred to the Vice and Narcotics Units. When the department established a Gang Unit, he was transferred to that Unit and promoted to the rank of Sergeant. Mr. Smith became one of the first Gang Enforcement Specialist in the Southeast United States, and subsequently established the Georgia Gang Intelligence Network. Mr. Smith traveled extensively throughout the United States providing training and education to Law Enforcement Agencies, Colleges, Universities, Schools and Community groups in the recognition and identification of gangs. He also traveled to a number of United States Territories providing training to law enforcement agencies. In 1973, Mr. Smith was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant with the Atlanta Police Department and assigned as commander of the Intelligence and Organized Crime Division, the first African-American assigned to that division. During that period, he became Atlanta Police Department’s representative to the National Law Enforcement Intelligence Network and the Georgia State Intelligence Network.  A short period later, Lt. Smith was assigned an additional responsibility as the director of the Mayor’s Office Security Division. Lt. Smith worked in concert with the Atlanta Homicide Task Force on the Missing and Murdered Children, from an Intelligence perspective. 

Lt. Smith also served as the Commander of the Internal Affairs Division, Field Operations Division (Zone 6 Assistant Commander), and the Director of Chaplaincy, where he authored the first and only Chaplain Manual for the Atlanta Police Department.
After serving for 30 years with the Atlanta Police Department, Lt. Smith retired and served with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and a GCIC Trainer. After leaving the GBI, he served as Chief of Police for the City of Pine Lake, Georgia, and later served with the Fulton County Police Department in the Training Division.
Lt. Smith attended Georgia State University (formerly DeKalb College), majoring in Administration of Justice, Brenau University in Gainesville, Georgia, where he majored in Criminal Justice, the Modern School of Music, where he majored in Piano. He also attended Command College, where he majored in Criminal Justice, and graduated from Georgia Chief School.  Lt. Smith holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Biblical Education from United Christian Ministries International, located in Albion, Indiana, and a Master of Divinity Degree in Apologetics from Luther Rice University, located in Stonecrest, Georgia.  He is married with three (3) children; one who is a Lieutenant with the Dekalb County Sheriff’s Office.

 Mr. Smith is currently assigned to the Office of Professional Standards with the Newton County Sheriff’s Office, located in Covington, GA